Differential actions of the medial region of caudal medulla on autonomic nerve activities

C. T. Yen, J. C. Hwang, C. K. Su, Yu-Fung Lin, J. M. Yang, C. Y. Chai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


1. The inhibitory effects produced by activation of the medial region of caudal medulla on activities of the left and right cardiac sympathetic, vagus and greater splanchnic nerves were studied in chloralose-urethane anaesthetized cats. 2. Electrical stimulation of the medial region produced an 80-92% inhibition of the sympathetic nerve activities, and a 45% and 58% inhibition of the left and right cardiac vagal nerve activities, respectively. There were no significant differences between effects elicited in the left and right autonomic nerves. Similar but smaller inhibitory effects were produced by micro-injection of sodium glutamate (0.5 mol/L) or DL-homocysteic acid (50 mmol/L) to the same medullary sites. 3. These data suggest that neurons residing in the medial medullary region exert strong inhibitory effects on autonomic nerve activities. Since the vasculature is principally innervated by sympathetic nerves, inhibition of sympathetic nerve activities might be the principal factor responsible for the depressor effects caused by activation of the medial region of caudal medulla. The heart is innervated both by sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves. Thus, their simultaneous inhibition during activation of the medial region elicits only a weak and variable inhibition of the heart.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)743-751
Number of pages9
JournalClinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiac sympathetic nerve
  • Cardiac vagal nerve
  • Cat
  • Greater splanchnic nerve
  • Hypotension
  • Medullary raphe nucleus
  • Paramedian reticular nucleus
  • Reticular formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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